Beginning in April, companies in the People's Republic of China will have to pay a new environmental tax. According the state-owned Xinhua news agency, the Environmental Protection Tax Law which went into effect on 1 January will impact 260,000 companies, business operators and public institutions, but not individuals. The environmental tax was to be imposed on emitted noise, air and water pollution and on solid waste disposal, according to Xinhua.
The news service described the new tax as the first “clearly designed for environment protection”, saying it would help establish a green financial and taxation system and promote pollution control and treatment. According to Xinhua, the introduction of the environmental protection tax would replace the uniform “pollutant discharge fee” which had been in effect for the past 40 years. The tax is intended to create more effective incentives for emissions reductions.